The latest news stories from the major news organizations in Cebu and Manila in the Philippines, the US and other countries.

Sunday, July 4, 2010

July 5, 2010 Major News Stories

Petron, Chevron to slash oil prices Monday

MANILA, Philippines (UPDATE) Major oil players Petron Corp. and Chevron Phils. will reduce its prices effective Monday morning, company officials said.

In a media advisory, Petron said effective 6 a.m., it would cut diesel and kerosene prices by P0.75 per liter and gasoline by P0.50 per liter.

Toby Nebrida of Chevron said their cutback would take effect at 12 midnight.

Road mishaps kill 40 in 21 days

BACK-TO-BACK road accidents that killed 40 persons in Cebu in the last three weeks prompted a call for an emergency meeting today of the Regional Council for Road Safety.

Land Transportation Office (LTO) 7 Director Raul Aguilos called for the meeting, to be held in the Sacred Heart Center, to discuss "a specific plan of action" to keep passengers safe.

The LTO also expects to start testing this week if vehicles operated by the VG&A bus company are roadworthy. One of its buses hit a concrete wall in Don Andres Soriano, Toledo City last Saturday afternoon, killing 15 passengers on the spot.

The franchises of five vehicles operated by VG&A will be suspended for at least 30 days starting today, said Land
Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB) 7 Director Benjie Go.

"We will ground the entire fleet and impose the same sanctions as those imposed on JD," Go said. He referred to a car rental company whose tour bus fell off the Transcentral Highway last June 13, killing its Filipino driver-operator and 20 foreigners, mostly Iranian doctors.

In a separate interview, LTO 7 Assistant Regional Director Edgar Catarongan said bus operator Dulce Gantuangco will need to present a valid franchise for the bus in Saturday's accident, or any proof that its certificate of public convenience had been extended.

He said their Traffic Violation System showed the franchise for that bus (GVG-145) expired in 2004.

Under the law, Catarongan said if a bus company is operating a colorum or illegal unit, it will be fined P7,000 and its other franchises, suspended for 120 days.

"There is a big liability for operating without a franchise because, without a franchise, any violation of the driver is also considered a violation of the owner," Catarongan said.

Driver Diosdado Requiso, 48, said last Saturday the brakes on the Tuburan-bound bus failed while they were going downhill.

Aguilos, citing initial findings of the LTO, said the bus was travelling at high speed and loaded with more than 70 passengers when it approached a curve in Sitio Landing, Barangay Don Andres Soriano (formerly Lutopan).

Less than two kilometers from the site, a trailer truck lost its brakes two weeks ago and hit a group of vendors preparing for a barangay fiesta. Four were killed.

In a separate interview yesterday, bus operator Gantuangco vouched for her driver Requiso.

"Di siya kaskasero nga drayber (He's not reckless)," she said.

She also denied the bus was overloaded. Aside from the 53-seat capacity, she said the LTO gave them permission for a standing capacity of "as many as ten" passengers.

She said she is ready to comply once LTFRB issues the suspension order. As of yesterday, her five other buses continued to ply their routes.

A suspension will make things difficult for passengers, especially to and from Tuburan. Three of her buses travel from Cebu
City to Tuburan, while two serve the Cebu City-Pinamungahan route, via Carcar.

"Makaapekto gyod ni kay makuwangan man ang units. Kami ray nagbiyahe padung sa Tuburan (It will affect transportation because we are the only ones serving Tuburan)," Gantuangco said in a phone interview.

Gantuangco also said she's not part of the Corominas Bros. bus line. Her bus line is registered under her name.

(Corominas Bros. issued a press statement last Saturday to assure they will take responsibility for the passengers in need of help and to double-check the safety of their buses, without waiting for official orders.)

Gantuangco said her drivers received about P3,000 a week. They get paid P250 per trip.

Also yesterday, the new chairman of the Cebu City Traffic Operations Management (Citom) called on the LTO to check all buses using the south and north bus terminals, following last Saturday's accident.

Former city councilor Sylvan "Jack" Jakosalem also wants the drivers checked, particularly their skills in handling emergency situations.

"Having three deadly vehicular accidents in three weeks is more than just coincidence," Jakosalem said.

He believes all buses should be grounded and checked, regardless of its operators. This can be done in batches to keep public transportation to the towns from grinding to a halt, he said.

"They (LTO) don't have to ground them all together, maybe just in batches, but all should be checked as quickly as possible," he said.

Jakosalem said his office will be stringently monitoring packed buses leaving the north and south bus terminals to ensure these will not be allowed to pick up more passengers along the way.

"We will enforce this and apprehend them (drivers), if seen. It is in the law that they cannot do that unless there is a designated bus stop," he said.

Jakosalem said he was told that drivers like to overload the buses because they get commissions for every passenger.

"Then they (drivers) so fast so they can have more round trips and thereby earn more, and that's a very dangerous practice if it is not monitored," he said.

According to Director Go of the LTFRB, one problem in vehicular accidents is that most drivers get away without jail terms when the relatives of victims decide not to pursue charges.

"We are consulting our lawyers if LTFRB can act as a complainant so as to ensure that criminal cases will push through until resolution and make sure these reckless drivers will serve jail terms," Go said.

Go added they will have to review the compensation scheme for bus drivers.

"They overload their buses because they earn a commission per head. They drive very fast so that they can make more round trips, ferrying more passengers, which leads to more earnings. They race against each other on the road and fight over passengers," Go said.

As of yesterday, the 10 other casualties brought to St. Francis Funeral Homes were identified.

They are Felicidad Arnibal, 61, of Guinabasan, Asturias; Jose Bueno, 61, of Poblacion, Tuburan; Romela Cabañero, 51, of Cantuod, Balamban; Mary Jane Capacite, 20, of Gen. Climaco, Toledo City; Teofilo Colegado, 49, of Jagbuaja, Tuburan; Danilyn Rosal 10, of Guinabasan, Asturias; Norberto Tijano, 40, Soong, Lapu-Lapu City; Jona Vega, 22, of Media Once,
Toledo City; Adonis Garbanzos, 75, and his wife Evelyn, 65, of Tisa, Cebu City.

Added to the injured list were Fortellano Abarcas, Vivian Benting, 14; John Patrick Basay, 13; Eddie Wilson Buhiya, 51; Juanito Batolan, 37; Janelle Cabamasa, 22; Reah Cantabaco, 16; Michael Cardinas, 17; Ferlita Fat, 63; Maricel Gabunada, 22; Warli Omandace, Anne Shane Panulaya, 16; Sarah Resaga, 17; Mirasol Sarlatan, 23; Cecilia Tallo, 45; Jerome Tecson, 32; and Sitarilyn Tundag, 26.

LTO-7 mitawag og Emergency meeting

TUNGOD sa sunodsunod nga dagkong vehicular accident sa Sugbo nga nikalas og ubay-ubay nga mga kinabuhi, magpatawag karong hapon og emergency meeting ang Regional Council for Road Safety.

Si Land Transportation Office (LTO-7) director Raul Aguilos, kinsa maoy pangulo sa regional road safety council, maoy nagpatawag niini mga alas 4 karong hapon sa Sacred Heart Center.

Nasayran nga gitukod sa LTO-7 ang maong konseho nga gilangkuban sa mga ahensiya sama sa LTFRB, DOH, DPWH, PNP, Traffic Group ug uban pa, sa niaging tuig human usab sa aksidente kaniadto sa EDC Liner sa lungsod sa Naga diin 4 ka mga kinabuhi ang nakalas.

Gikaalarma ni Aguilos nga nagsunodsunod karon ang mga aksidente sa kadalanan nga naglambigit sa mga pampublikong sakyanan diin ang labing uwahi mao ang pagbangga sa V&JA bus sa Corominas Bros. sa Toledo City diin 15 ka mga pasahero ang nangamatay ug ubay-ubay ang nangaangol.

Matod ni Aguilos nga kinahanglang dunay himuong aksyon aron mahunong na ang mga aksidente sa kadalanan.

"I am calling all members of the regional council for road safety to attend an emergency meeting to discuss specific plan of action and strategy to ensure road safety and security of passengers specially of PUV's in view of the recent back to back road mishaps in the region," pahibawo pa ni Aguilos.

Ang aksidente sa V&JA maoy ikatulong duguong vehicular accident sud lang sa usa ka buwan diin ang una mao ang tourist bus nga nahug sa pangpang sa Balamban nga nipatay og 20 ka mga Iranian national ug gisundan sa pagbangga sa trailer truck sa Toledo diin ubay-ubay sad ang nangamatay.

Matod ni Aguilos nga ang ilang ahensiya uban sa LTFRB mopatuman sa samang procedure nga ilang gipatuman sa JD Transport.

Kini naglakip sa dihadihang pagsuspenso sa prangkisa samtang pending ang imbestigasyon aron mapaubos ang tanang mga sakyanan sa nahisgutang transport company sa road worthiness test ug pagpaubos sa ilang mga drayber sa drug test ug retraining.

Sa pasiunang imbestigasyon nasayran sa LTO nga moabot sa 70 ang mga pasahero sa V&JA bus nga giingong overloading na kay duna ra kini kapasidad nga mokarga og 50 ka mga pasahero.

Giingong nagbiyahe ang bus sa "abnormal high speed" samtang nagmaneho sa kurbadahon nga dapit ug nawagtangan og kontrol ang drayber niini hinungdan nga gibangga kini sa pader sa Lutopan.

Drayber sa Corominas, pasakaan og kasong 'reckless imprudence...' karon

Pasakan og kasong reckless imprudence resulting to multiple homicides si Diosdado Requizo, 48, taga Libo, lungsod sa Tuburan, Sugbo nga drayber sa V&JA Corominas (GVG-145) karong adlawa.

Di mominos 5 ka pasahero ang nakalas og ka 48 ang nangaangol sa pagkabangga sa iyang gimanehong sakyanan sa niadtong Sabado sa hapon sa Barangay Lutopan, dakbayan sa Toledo.

Si PO3 Julius Sanchez, traffic investigator sa kapulisan sa Toledo nga nahinabi sa Sun. Star Superbalita, nagkanayon nga ilang isunod lang una ang kasong serious multiple injuries sanglit gi-una nila ang kaso sa nangamatay.

Si PO3 Sanchez nagkanayon nga ilahang gipaabot ang ubang mga kabanay sa mga naangol sanglit na-busy pa kini sa pag-atiman sa mga kabanay ning nangaangol nga nagpaalim pa sa nagkadaiyang tmabalanan sa dakbayan.

Subay niini gibutyag ni PO3 Sanchez, nga nigatibo sa liquor test ang driver nga si Requizo, human ilang gipaeksamin niadtong Sabado sa gabii human sa trahedya.

Gipahibalo usab niini nga human nila mapasakaan ug kaso karong adlawa si Requizo, mo-request unya sila sa ilang hepe nga si Chief Insp. Jovito Canlapan aron mapa-ubos kini sa drug test.

Sumala ni PO3 Sanchez nga kagahapon sa buntag si Jonathan Pepito ang representanti sa Corominas, kinsa naa usab sa buhatan sa bise gobernador niduaw sa police station ug gipang-asikaso ang bayranan sa punerarya ug hospital.

Apan ang ubang kabanay ilaha pa gayud nga gipa-abot ug gipanghinaot nga karong adlawa moduaw sa police station aron ma asikaso pa ang ubang mga dukumento nga pagsang-at sa dugang kaso.

Giklaro niini nga nagpabiling 15 ang patay hangtud ning mga higayuna sanglit ang uban 48 ka mga naangol nagpabilin p sa tambalanan.

Ang mga namatay mao sila si Alfredo Pacillos 55, Sitio Asinan Brgy. Bato Toledo; Cyril Benting 10 taga Mohon, Brgy. Colinia Tuburan; inahan nga si Flordelez Benting 37; ug ang adopted son niini nga si Sian Vincent Bazarte, 5; Maximo Agsoy, 55, taga Bgry. Caridad, Tuburan; Romela Cabañero, taga Brgy. Cantuod, Balamban; Mary Jane Capacite, 20, Brgy. General Climaco, Toledo; Teofilo Colegado 49, Brgy. Jagbuaya, Tuburan; Jose Bueno 61, Poblacion Tuburan; Danilyn Rosal, 10, Guinabasan Asturias; Felicidad Arnibal, 61, Guinabasan Asturias; Norberto Tejano 40, taga, Soong, Lapulapu; Adonis Garbanzos, 73, Tisa Labangon, apan dunay panimalay sa Sta. Lucia Asturias; asawa niining si Evelyn, Junavie Vega, 22, taga Media-onse Toledo.

Kandila hinungdan sa sunog

USA ka inahan nga nagdagkot og kandila sa altar ug nag-ampo aron makapasar ang iyang anak sa nursing board examination kagahapon, apan mao na hinuon kini ang sinugdanan sa sunog.

Si Estella Dy, 66, biyuda, nalimot sa pagpawong sa kandila human sa pag-ampo ug nilakaw.

Nakurat na siya nga niulbo sa sunod ang iyang balay sud sa residential compound sa Sitio San Antonio de Padua, Barangay Inayawan, siyudad sa Sugbo kagahapon sa udto.

Hinuon, si Estella wa maunsa ug wa ubang naapektohan nga kinabuhi.

Apan, naabot ang iyang bunga low-type nga balay ug naapektohan ang ikaduhang andana sa kasikbit nga balay sa iyang anak nga si Voltaire, sumala ni SFO2 Roilen Maratas sa Cebu City Fire Department nga nahinabi sa Sun.Star Cebu.

Ang fire department nakadawa sa alarma nianang alas 11:50 sa buntag ug gibutang kini sa second alarm nianang alas 11:54 sa buntag,

Gawas sa kahagip-ot sa dan, si Maratas nagkanayon nga wa silay laing problema na nasugatan sa pagpawong sa kayo.

Nakontrolar ang sunog human sa 10 minutos nga pagpakigbugno sa mga bombero.

Ang danyos gibanabana nga moabot og P250,000.

Si Maratas, kinsa nakahinabi ni Estella, nisulti sa Sun.Star Cebu nga pipila ka gutlo sa wa pa ang sunog, ang inahan nagdagkot og kandila ug nag-ampo alang sa iyang anak nga atua sa Manila nagkuha sa nursing board exam kagahapon.

Human sa iyang pag-ampo, niadto sa balay sa iyang anak sud sa samang compound.

Sa iyang pagbalik, nakita niya nga nasunog na ang altar diha sud sa iyang lawak. Tupad sa alter mao ang aparador nga daling gidakop sa kayo.

Nidagan si Estella ug nangayo og pakitabang.

"Wa man gud daw niya mapawong ang kandila diha sa altar," matod ni Maratas, diin ang altar ginama sa kahoy.

DSWD makatabang sa enrolment karon

PROGRAMA sa Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) alang sa mga kabos nga tinun-an maoy usa sa nakatabang sa pagsaka sa enrolment sa school year 2010-2011.

Ang DSWD-7 nipahibawo nga nisaka og 72 porsiyento ang enrolment sa napulo ka mga barangay sa siyudad sa Sugbo nga maoy beneficiary sa Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program (4P's) nga magduha ka tuig na karong gipatuman.

Ang maong mga barangay naglakip sa Mambaling, Duljo-Fatima, Kalunasan, T. Padilla, Tejero, Sudlon 1 ug 2, Tagbao, Inayawan ug Sawang Calero.

Nasayran nga ang maong programa nga unang gipatuman sa miaging tuig maoy nakatabang aron maminosan ang dropout rate sa mga tinun-an sa maong mga barangay ug napabilin ang 85 percent nga school attendance matag buwan.

"Aside from the sustainability of children enrolling for SY 2010-2011, another most profound gain that can be noted is the increase in enrollment in the schools covering the ten barangays of 4Ps in Cebu City with an average increase of 72% and 62% respectively. It did not only maintain the students to enroll for this school year but it also encouraged others as well," nagkanayon ang report sa DSWD-7.

Ang 4P's usa ka poverty reduction strategy sa gobyerno nga maghatag og "conditional cash assistance" sa labing kabos nga pamilya nga naa sa labing kabos nga mga barangay sud sa lima ka tuig.

Makadawat sila og P500 alang sa health ug dugang P300 matag bata kon nag-edad kini og 14-anyos paubos apan maximum lang sa tulo ka bata matag pamilya.

Aron makadawat niini ang pamilya sud sa lima ka tuig, kinahanglang motuman sila sa mga rekisitos: kon mabdos ang inahan, kinahanglan kining mopaubos sa pre ug post-natal care sa mga kuwapilikadong health professional, ang ilang anak nga 5-anyos paubos kinahanglang ipa-check-up ug ipa-immunized samtang ang ilang anak nga 3 ngadto sa 14-anyos kinahanglang motungha, kinahanglan usab ang mga bata nga ipaubos sa deworming ug ang inahan kinahanglang motambong sa family planning seminar.

Dako usab ang pasalamat sa usa sa mga beneficiary nga si Rowena Erma, 13-anyos nga tinun-an sa barangay Tagbao kay nakapadayon gyud sa iyang pagtungha ug wan a magproblema pa sa iyang gastuhon sa tunghaan ug sa baon.

"Ganahan man ko moeskwela karon kay makapalit naman mi og gamit sa eskwelahan ug naa na koy pirmanente na baon," malipayong pag-asoy pa ni Erma.

Ang DSWD, Department of Education ug Department of Health nagtinabangay karon aron pagtabang sa mga kabos nga kabataan nga makalingkawas sa ilang kalisod ug makab-ot ang mahayag nga kaugmaon.

Number of jobless Filipino nurses increasing

by by Apples Jalandoni, ABS-CBN News
MANILA, Philippines – Richard Palikpik was one of the 92,000 nursing graduates who took the licensure examinations on Saturday. Palikpik said he spent the last 3 months reviewing for the exam.
According to the Professional Regulation Commission (PRC), there are 187,000 unemployed nurses in the country today. They can't find work because there are no vacancies in hospitals, it added.

DoH asked for a fresh probe into bidding of H1N1 equipment

MANILA, Philippines - The Trade Union Congress of the Philippines (TUCP) has asked Health Secretary Enrique Ona to penalize those behind the alleged anomalous purchase of flu-testing machines.

7,000 OFWs defy Afghanistan ban

Despite a 2007 government ban on working in war-torn Afghanistan, some 7,000 overseas Filipino workers have slipped into the country to work for the United States and other foreign contractors, recruitment consultant Emmanuel Geslani said Sunday.

OFWs have to wait for jobs at home - DOLE

Overseas Filipino workers would have to wait a while before government can generate enough decent jobs for them to come home, the country"s new labor chief said over the weekend.

SC nixes bid to void DAR order on farmlands conversion

MANILA, Philippines - The Supreme Court upheld an order of the Department of Agrarian Reform (DAR) in 2008 to temporarily suspended the conversion of farmlands for commercial use.

DILG 7 officer to act as town mayor

AFTER a week of post-election tension in Compostela, the Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG) decided to appoint its Central Visayas regional director to serve as the town's temporary mayor.

But DILG 7 Director Pedro Noval said yesterday he will only sit as the town's mayor until the Commission on Elections (Comelec) settles the election protest former mayor Richie Wagas filed against his rival, mayor-elect Joel Quiño.

"I will only serve as mayor in order to prevent any hampering of the municipal government's services to the people," said Noval.

In an interview with Sun.Star Cebu, Noval said DILG Undersecretary for Local Government Austere Panadero called him up during the weekend, confirming his appointment as Compostela's caretaker mayor.

Panadero also said the letter of appointment, signed by President and current DILG secretary Benigno Aquino III, is expected to arrive today, said Noval.

As soon as the letter of appointment arrives, Noval will immediately sit as temporary mayor of the northern Cebu town.

He said he is willing to carry out the orders, but admitted "it is an additional burden as I must juggle my obligations of serving as acting mayor while doing my job as DILG regional director."

He urged the Comelec Second Division to immediately resolve the matter so he can focus on his work at the DILG 7.

Although tension rose last week in Compostela, Noval is not expecting any opposition once he sits as temporary mayor of the town, as he will only be there in order for government services to continue without delay.

In separate interviews yesterday, Wagas and Quiño refused to comment on the matter until they receive the official letter of appointment.

It was not clear how the council will do its job, since the suspension also affects the local legislature.

During a meeting with the three officials last week, Provincial Election Supervisor and lawyer Lionel Marco Castillano
confirmed the Comelec Second Division's resolution suspending the proclamation of Quiño and eight of his councilors.

Castillano also confirmed that since the suspension order must take effect, appointing someone to serve as temporary mayor would now be up to DILG. 

Aquino apologizes for Cabinet men's behavior

MANILA, Philippines - Officials of the Cabinet of President Benigno "Noynoy" Aquino III's will undergo training on how to conduct themselves better when dealing with the members of the media.

Aquino himself had apologized for Presidential Spokesman Edwin Lacierda and Department of Education Secretary Armin Luistro, who both ticked off some reporters only a few days into their office.

Aquino also asked the members of the media to understand his Cabinet men, who do not have any prior experience on how to deal when being grilled with controversial questions.

Last Thursday, Lacierda missed a scheduled press conference in Malacanang.

Reporters were waiting for him for hours on his reaction regarding the administration's first, but controversial, memorandum circular. He was later seen being interviewed on ANC.

Lacierda had already apologized for his gaffe.

Luistro, on the other hand, blamed the media for adding fuel to the fire between the government and the Catholic Church regarding the sex education program.

Aquino stressed Luistro, former president of the De La Salle University, was used to facing students.

He said the people behind his successful campaign will give the seminar to the officials.

Kalinga radioman first media fatality under PNoy

BAYOMBONG, Nueva Vizcaya - A radio commentator was shot dead Saturday night in Kalinga province, the first journalist killed in the five-day-old Aquino administration.
Jose Dagio, 75, was shot while having dinner in his home in Barangay Tuga in Tabuk town around 8 p.m., according to police reports.

Dagio was a reporter-commentator of Radyo Natin Tabuk and a part-time columnist of a community newspaper, the police said. He was rushed to Kalinga Provincial Hospital but was declared dead on arrival.

Probe past administrations too, Cardinal Rosales urges PNoy

Investigate the former president, but include the previous administrations as well. Manila Archbishop Gaudencio Cardinal Rosales thus chided President Benigno Simeon "Noynoy" Aquino III for having his Truth Commission focus on the alleged crimes of his predecessor, now Pampanga Rep. Gloria Arroyo, saying he should at least be consistent and probe other past administrations.

NAIA operations back to normal

MANILA, Philippines – Operations at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA) returned to normal Saturday night after thick smog disrupted flights at the airport.

Militants surprise security at the US Embassy with lightning rally

MANILA, Philippines - Security at the United States Embassy were caught unaware when militant groups staged a lightning rally Sunday morning in protest of the Visiting Forces Agreement (VFA).

Kiko: Senate will not be subservient to Palace

Despite his close ties with President Benigno "Noynoy" Aquino III, Senator Francis "Kiko" Pangilinan on Sunday vowed an "independent" Senate if ever he becomes head of the chamber in the 15th Congress.

Group seeks to revive graft case vs ex-TESDA chief

A confederation of government employees has asked the Aquino administration to expedite action on pending graft cases against former Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (TESDA) Director-General and now Iloilo Representative Augusto Syjuco.

Aquino wants more time to study Hacienda Luisita options

Nakisuap si Presidente Benigno Aquino III na bigyan pa ng kaukulang panahon ang gobyerno na mapag-aralan ang paglipat ng mga lupain sa mga magsasaka na sakop ng Hacienda Luisita. Ang hacienda ay  pagmamay-ari ng mga kamag-anak  ng presidente.

No influence in high-profile cases: Palace

MALACAÑANG IS adopting a hands-off policy on two high-profile cases -- double murder involving Senator Panfilo M. Lacson and land reform coverage of the Cojuangco family's Hacienda Luisita, a Palace spokesman said yesterday.

Community service for polluters

Ipatutupad ni Department of Environment and Natural Resources Secretary Ramon Paje ang order na lahat ng kumpirmadong nagtatapon ng basura sa mga estero ay mapaparusahan sa pamamagitan ng paglinis ng mga estero kung saan sila nagkalat ng basura.

MILF vows to protest military attack in Maguindanao

The Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) has accused the military of launching offensives against the rebel group's forces in Datu Blah Sinsuat town in Maguindanao.

2 suspects in killing of massacre witness arrested

Police arrested two suspects linked to the killing of a witness in the massacre of 57 people on November 23, 2009, in Maguindanao.

Communists set condition for new talks

THE AQUINO administration should honor earlier agreements if it wants peace talks with the Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP) to proceed, the group said at the weekend.

Major revamp in the AFP in the works – spokesman

The Armed Forces of the Philippines said on Sunday it was anticipating a major revamp in its structure but assured members of the Philippine Military Class of 1978 holding key posts that they were not facing demotion.

Bayan to Aquino: Condemn AFP rights abuses

The militant Bagong Alyansang Makabayan (Bayan) urged President Benigno Aquino III to make a categorical statement against the military's alleged human rights abuses as it expressed apprehension over the new commander-in-chief's pledge to increase the size and resources of the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP).

$1: P46.520

$1: P46.520

Euro 1: P58.3088

Energy draws flak from ethanol producers

The Energy Department is drawing flak from local ethanol producers because of its recommendation to lift the import ban on ethanol and lower the blending ratios prescribed under the Biofuels Law.

At least 10 hurt in Iraq suicide attack

RAMADI – A suicide bomber blew himself up at the entrance to government offices in the western Iraqi city of Ramadi on Sunday wounding at least 10 people, a local official said.

Iran hangs two for 'waging war against God'

TEHRAN – Iran hanged on Sunday two men convicted of "waging war against God" after they were found guilty of drug trafficking, armed robbery and abduction, a report said.

2 Russians kidnapped by pirates freed in Nigeria

MOSCOW – Two Russian sailors taken hostage by pirates who hijacked a Greek-owned ship off Cameroon in mid-May have been freed in Nigeria, the Russian sailors' union was quoted as saying on Sunday.

Pope praises life of 13th-century pontiff who quit

SULMONA, Italy - Pope Benedict XVI traveled to a central Italian town Sunday to pay homage to Celestine V, saying the simple lifestyle of the 13th-century hermit who resigned the papacy can serve as an example for modern men and women.

9 Filipinos progress in World 9-Ball Championships

MANILA, Philippines – Nine Filipinos got past their knockout stage rivals in the 2010 World Pool Championships (World 9-Ball) but 3 of the country's best hopes—Efren "Bata" Reyes, Dennis "Robocop" Orcollo and Lee Van "The Slayer" Corteza - bowed out of contention.

Alcano, 'Django' near q'finals of World Pool tilt

Double world champion Ronnie Alcano is headed to the round-of-16 of the prestigious World 9-Ball Championship in Doha, Qatar. Several crack Filipino players like Francisco "Django" Bustamante, Marlon Manalo and Antonio Lining, plus a number of unheralded Pinoys, have also barged their way near the quarterfinal round.

'Filipinos among world's best in shooting'

by by Dennis Gasgonia,
MANILA, Philippines – Multiple world champion pistol shooter Jethro "The Jet" Dionisio believes that Filipinos, even the shorter ones, can compete with the world's best in practical shooting.

PBA: Tigers devour Realtors to boost playoff chances

Coca-Cola didn"t take a chance and proceeded to dismantle Sta. Lucia, 100-84, as the Tigers lived for another day in the PBA Fiesta Cup wild card playoffs Sunday at the Big Dome.

Nowitzki re-signs with Mavericks

by Reuters
DALLAS – Dirk Nowitzki has re-signed with the Dallas Mavericks, the player's adviser told local media on Saturday.

Clinical Nadal routs Berdych in Wimbledon final

LONDON – A spellbinding display of brutal hitting and raw speed from Rafa Nadal secured the Spaniard his second Wimbledon title on Sunday with a 6-3 7-5 6-4 victory over 12th seed Tomas Berdych.

Aquino vows to wake up early to beat traffic

Better late than "wangwang." President Benigno "Noynoy" Aquino III will not yield to suggestions that he finally allow his escorts to use sirens and cut himself a path through Metro Manila's traffic jams just to ensure his own safety and make it to his appointments on time.

Aquino socializes, goes for massage

MANILA, Philippines- Three days after assuming office, President Aquino on Saturday afternoon took time off to have physical therapy and massage at the Philippine Rehabilitation Institute Foundation in Quezon City, his long-time personal driver said.

Pacquiao, Cojuangco's wife urge public to support Aquino

Boxing hero and Saranggani Representative Emmanuel Pacquiao and Gretchen Oppen Cojuangco, wife of business tycoon Eduardo Cojuangco, have separately called on the Filipino people to rally behind President Benigno Aquino III and do their share to help him succeed.

James Yap still wooing Kris

Hindi sumusuko ang basketbol superstar na si James Yap, at patuloy nitong sinusuyo ang asawa niyang celebrity, si Kris Aquino. Pinagdasal si Yap ng kanyang mga teammates sa B-Meg upang makalusot siya sa isa na namang makusot na yugto ng buhay nilang mag-asawa.

Iran unveils human-like robot

TEHRAN – Iran has developed a new human-like walking robot to be used in "sensitive jobs," government newspaper Iran reported on Sunday .

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